Football: FA charges Souness and fines Cantona

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THE disciplinary wheels within Lancaster Gate turned again yesterday when the Football Association charged Graeme Souness, the Liverpool manager, with bringing the game into disrepute and fined Manchester United's striker, Eric Cantona, after finding him guilty of spitting at Leeds fans.

Souness's summons follows abusive comments directed at a linesman, Mike Bullivant, during the draw at Crystal Palace last week. Bullivant reported this outburst to the referee, Roger Dilkes, who ordered Souness from the dugout. Souness, facing a fine and the fourth touchline ban of his career, has a fortnight to request a personal hearing.

Cantona, no stranger to disciplinary procedures in his native France, was ordered to pay pounds 1,000 after being found guilty of spitting at supporters on his return to Elland Road last month. He was also warned about his future conduct. 'The (disciplinary) commission did take into consideration that he was subject to provocation prior to the incident,' an FA spokeswoman said.

Gary McAllister, who broke an arm at Arsenal last month, is expected to begin his comeback for Leeds reserves against Rotherham tonight.

Ted Pearce, who has managed Farnborough Town for 23 years, is to retire at the end of the season. At another Conference club, Dennis Booth, the manager of Stafford Rangers, announced that he is leaving to become assistant manager at Bristol Rovers.